the mediterranean, sweeping through north africa and reaching as far west as spain. to the east, it encompassed egypt, turkey, greece, and palestine, where jesus was born in the jewish land of dea, then rul b hy ng.kierod >> in judea, the king, herod, was in effect a client king. he ruled almost in place of rome. he was the... he was the voice of rome, the instrument of rome, probably "instrument of rome" is best in that, because he... he had his own independent notions certainly. >> herod the great was probably one of the greatest kings of the post-biblical period in israel, but you wouldn't want your daughter to date him. he was ambitious, brutal, extremely successful. >> and it is one of the real untold ironies of jewish history that this man, who... who's the guy you love to hate in jewish history, really, leaves the most indelible mark on the face of the land of israel. >> it appears that herod thought of jerusalem as his showpiece. he really wanted to make it a place where people would come, just as people would have gone to athens, or rome, or the great cities of the mediterranean world.